Lincoln Axes Small Car Plans
To focus all compact energies on new CUV
October 31, 2011
By: Austin Rutherford
It’s Halloween. In the spirit of death, we bring you this . . .
Sixteen months ago, Ford Motor Company set out on an ambitious goal to not only give life into the Lincoln brand, but to make it as prestigious as the likes of Audi and BMW. It was at this time, Ford decided it would bring seven new or heavily revised vehicles within four years to Lincoln. Part of those plans involved a production version of the Concept C. Reportedly named the MkC, it was to feature a Ford Focus derived platform and a host of new technologies to set it apart from the likes of the Audi A3 and Lexus CT.
Shortly thereafter, Ford brought together a Lincoln-only team filled with luxury experts, designers and engineers that would work on new Lincolns and Lincolns only.
According to two independent sources within FoMoCo, FIN has learned that Lincoln has killed off plans for the MkC. Instead, Lincoln will focus all compact energies upon their new CUV, which is internally named the MkD. According to one source, Ford feared that the MkC would cannibalize sales of the larger MkZ sedan.
This is not the only bad news coming from Lincoln. According to a separate Ford supplier source, the 2013 Lincoln MkZ has been pushed back yet again. Originally scheduled to launch in the first quarter of 2012, and then for June 2012, the MkZ is now set to arrive in late 2012. The all-new 2013 Ford Fusion is supposedly still on track for a mid-2012 launch.
According to a source who has seen the “MkD,” the Escape based CUV sports a design that is more of a tall hatch rather than a traditional CUV. When it comes to interior dimensions, it will be slightly less than that of the Escape, suggesting that it could compete with Audi's new Q3. It is not yet known whether the “MkD” name will make it to production.
There is good news in the pipeline, however. FIN has learned Lincoln is working on two new V-6 engines, powered by EcoBoost. Initial information suggests the new mills could generate 400 and 425 horsepower, respectively. At this time few details are known.
With this news and that of Lincoln strongly considering a RWD flagship sedan, it appears Lincoln is chasing to for a more upscale and profitable lineup.
Just a child growing up, Lincoln is learning what will and will not work in the luxury field and how they plan to approach it. As its first victim, the compact car is allegedly no longer in those plans. Will one ever be? We will have to wait and see.